Maxine Carlson, Award Winning Author


Poppy Hills, The Hidden Jewel of Pebble Beach

Thrilled to launch a wonderful keepsake gift collection. Best of all, Poppy Hills is surrounded by wild huckleberries and is the very next stop along the 17-Mile Drive (after my Huckleberry Hill neighborhood). What a fabulous partnership!  Products and gifts include; signed books, journals, themed stationary sets, mocha-latte cup/saucer with napkin ring, vintage lemonade cups and collectables. The “Molly and Fern” children’s section offers affordable selections for little ones that are visiting Pebble Beach. Our family history, based on Monterey Bay, and a treasured ‘Huckleberry Hill Kitchen Crosby Clam Bake Chowder’ recipe are  featured. The Huckleberry Hill Adventure Vintage Gift Collection at Poppy Hills is a feel good experience. Come by for gourmet coffee, breakfast or lunch and take in the view of Del Monte Forest. Full bar available. I’ll see you by the fire pits.


Monterey Fisherman’s WharfCarousel Candies (Featuring hand-made huckleberry confections including; lolli’s, salt water taffy and gourmet huckleberry truffles.)

Big Sur- Nepenthe, The Phoenix Shop

(At Nepenthe stop by for checkers and games on the patio, a delicious ‘ambrosia burger’ and the amazing view! The Phoenix has unique gifts and Big Sur inspired products.

Big Sur- The Big Sur River Inn General Store:

At The River Inn, dip your toes in the river, get a yummy lunch at The General Store (the burrito bar is a local favorite) and a signed copy of The Wild Buck.

Carmel-by-the Sea- Thinker Toys

Monterey, Del Monte Shopping CenterThinker Toys (next to Starbucks look for toy soldiers)

Non-autographed books available at independent books stores or on-line at Amazon.

The Wild Buck, Adventures on Huckleberry Hill, Book 1

Join Molly and Fern in search of a wild buck in this heartwarming tale. Creative sister Molly loves daydreaming. Fern can’t sit still. Nonna Frances creates Italian inspired culinary delights with locally sourced Monterey Bay wild huckleberries. They make a fun and enthralling team.  Each chapter includes a delicious recipe. Become a naturalist as Monterey Bay coastal stewardship is embraced via everyday adventures. Explore the nature and fauna of a world famous evergreen climate.  This engaging story is majestically set along the rustic central coast. Return to Huckleberry Hill often. What adventures shall we plan next? The Wild Buck is a GOLD MEDAL, 2018 Moonbeam Award winning book honored for exceptional children’s literature. 


Summer ushers in wild huckleberry season, my favorite time of year. Yeah!

Keep following your dreams! XO Maxine #huckleberryhilladventure

Drew McSherry is the talented artist that brings ‘images to life’ in my books. Follow along for my next literature release (2019).


4th of July Parade- City of Monterey Annual Fourth of July Festivities. Featuring ‘The Nonna Mobile’ with authentic Sicilian Nonna’s in a GUCCI Fiat. Author Maxine via a sponsored automobile by the fabulous Cardinale Motors. We will also feature a ‘mermaid mobile’ with fishermen to ‘kick off’ the upcoming launch of our newest book. We hope to see you along the parade route!- July 4, 2018 at 10 a.m.

‘Page Turners; Bookfest’ – Meet local authors at Monterey Elks Lodge, overlooking the scenic Monterey Bay for this summer event.

July 15, 2018. 2:00-5:00 p.m. 150 Mar Vista Drive, Monterey, CA. Free and Family Friendly! Click this Monterey County Weekly link for details.

Concours d’ Elegance- Monterey Peninsula- Join me in person or for virtual event sharing at Quail Lodge and at Pebble Beach Resorts for amazing car week festivities, recipes and fun! Visit with Maxine at The Quail Event, Friday August 24. Festivities are August 21-26, 2018.

-Let’s Be Creative-

Book characters Molly and Fern encourage you to make summer art and crafts. Gather crayons and do a water color wash, add stickers or magnetic letters for a collage. ‘Upcycle’ (recycle) paper plates to make an adorable sea otter! We hope to see you around Monterey Bay!



 Thank you all for embracing happiness through books and sharing Italian recipes. Keep having adventures! XOXO


Readers: Send me your childhood sibling photos…I will post and share at Maxine Carlson Author (Facebook) site.

Throwback photos…sharing retro “Molly and Fern” images. This is my sister Francine (“Fern” in my book series) and I exploring and having real life adventures. 

Book characters Molly, Fern and Nonna were thrilled to be celebrating together! 

The Sugar Plum Fairy Party’ was a festive holiday luncheon in Carmel-by-the-Sea at Sunset Center. Book character ‘Nonna’ (performed by Nonna Catherine) featured The Wild Buck, set in Del Monte Forest, for a book reading. This ‘Silver Anniversary’ showcasesed the iconic Del Monte Hotel, with characters Sam Morse, John Steinbeck, Salvador Dali and Louis Armstrong.

-Thank You American Veterans For Your Service-

Ricardo Porlito, Vietnam Vet, won The Wild Buck. Ricardo’s wife is a teacher.


The Wild Buck, and it’s coordinating merchandise, has been awarded a gold medal. The ‘Moonbeam Award’ brings recognition to exemplary children’s books and celebrates life-long reading.

Having a blast on the ‘Shagbag Show’ (tune in at 9am PST each Saturday) at 1460 am or 101.1 FM (KION) or

-Visiting California? Stop by historic Monterey Fisherman’s Wharf-

Look for the ‘pretty in pink’ building (Carousel Candies) with the authentic taffy puller! Delicious hand made huckleberry salt water taffy, lolli’s, huckleberry truffles and gourmet candy boxes are featured along autographed book sets. Hand making confections for over 55 years this iconic landmark, with it’s famous treats, is a ‘must see’ experience… a local favorite. 

Local author’s gather in the city of Carmel, at the Harrison Memorial Library (for a roundtable panel).

Unplug with Huckleberry Hill Adventure:

Visit our Huckleberry Hill Boutique for unique Pacific Coast inspired gift items. International shipping available.

Life handing you lemons? (image: Lena Max Photography) Make cello via our love limoncello boutique!




-Carmel Pine Cone Article-

July 2018

Book by P.B. writer urges kids to get out and explore


THE TALE of two girls on a quest to find an elusive wild buck in Del Monte Forest — and all the magnificent distractions they encounter along the way — is the subject of a new children’s book by a Pebble Beach author.

In the “The Wild Buck,” written by Maxine Carlson, sisters Molly and Fern live in a “sprawling” house atop Huckleberry Hill in Pebble Beach but frequently venture outside, which leads them on a search for a mysterious wild buck.

“The book really features the local climate that is tied to and shaped by our Monterey Bay Ocean Sanctuary including the flora and fauna and unique setting of our area,” Carlson told The Pine Cone about the book, which is illustrated by Drew McSherry.

The girls, during their environmental explorations, come across many other natural elements typical of the Monterey Peninsula; quail, woodpeckers, banana slugs, honeysuckle, huckleberries, Monterey pines, and the aroma of the Pacific Ocean.

“And always misty fog coming off beautiful Monterey Bay,” Carlson said.

The book, Carlson explained, features an important and relevant message for 21st century, tech-savvy kids, who are often glued to their electronic devices: get out and enjoy nature more often. By being in touch with the outdoors a child is motivated to conserve and protect our unique Monterey Bay environment.

“Have adventures wherever you are and really explore your environment,” she said. “You can’t do that if you are only doing screen time.”

Carlson, 47, based Molly on herself, and Fern on her real- life sister, Francine, 45, both of whom grew up in Pebble Beach and were regularly encouraged by their grandmother, Frances Davi-Cardinalli, to go into the open and play. When they were growing up, iPods and iPads weren’t invented yet and the forest was their playground.

“Back then we were always outside, and that’s what kept our imagination going,” she said.

Nonna, as they called their grandma, was a good cook, and coming together to eat as a family was an essential part of their Italian heritage and culture. That’s why Carlson decided to include some of her Nonna’s recipes in “The Wild Buck.”

The story is the first in the Huckleberry Hill Adventure Series, which Carlson said includes three written but yet-to- be published tales also set throughout the Monterey Peninsula, including one in Carmel.

My name is Maxine Carlson. My husband Eric, daughter Bella Sophia and dog Snowball are the light of my life (photo below). I am following my dream of writing and publishing children’s books. Follow my family as we have Italian inspired culinary and life adventures on Huckleberry Hill in Pebble Beach California.

Huckleberry Hugs, Maxine (A.K.A. Molly)

My lights, Bella Sophia and hubby Eric. At beautiful San Carlos Cathedral Royal Presidio Chapel in Monterey.



Maxine Carlson is a proud member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

The Wild Buck (Book 1 of the Huckleberry Hill Series) was awarded with the 2018 GOLD MEDAL for outstanding children’s literature.